How Should I Parent a Model to a Rig

I am trying to parent my model to my rig. I made the rig and it works fine but, I can’t parent it to my model. I have tried every type of parent and none of them seem to work for my model. The only one that actually constrained the armature to the model was the armature deform with automatic weights but, it made the model look like this:

I’m not sure if there is a modifier I should add or a different parent. This is my first time rigging and skinning so maybe there is an obvious answer. I’m making this for a school project so, the faster I can figure this out the better. I could really use some help with this.

You want to apply location/rotation/scale on both armature and model (mesh object) before doing any parenting. Ctrl a in object mode.

You want to parent the model to the rig with automatic weights (or with empty groups if you want to weight paint manually.)

You don’t parent the rig to the model. Just the model to the rig. As in, the rig is the parent, the model is the child.

After automatic weights, you may want to do some manual weight painting in weight paint mode. But if the model does something weird when you didn’t even transform any part of the armature, then it’s the armature that’s messed up, or else it’s rotation/scale that’s messed up.

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I tried this and it still produced the same results. I tried weight painting but I’m not very experienced with it and couldn’t get the results I wanted.

You should try temporarily deleting all constraints from your armature if you have any. Save a backup, enter pose mode on your armature, enable all armature layers, unhide all bones, select all bones, and use “clear pose constraints” from the search menu. (Looking at your picture, you may have poorly set IK pole targets, which is a very common beginner problem.)

But really, there’s not a whole lot of information to go on here. Consider uploading a file somewhere and linking it.

rig.blend (2.4 MB)

Here’s the blend file for the character. If you have a chance to give it a look, I would appreciate the help with the rig.

Well, it’s everything I said, plus more in addition.

  1. You have unapplied scale and rotation on both the mesh and armature

  2. You have constraints on your IK bones with wrong pole angles set


  1. Your mesh has some serious problems with being non-manifold (probably doubled verts, maybe more) which will cause serious problems with autoweights. In edit mode, use “select non manifold” operation and fix what you see.

  2. Your mesh isn’t ikely to get great autoweights anyways, because of its structure (bones aren’t placed inside the mesh.) You’re likely to have to do manual weight painting.

It worked! Thank you for all the help. :smile: